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December 5, 2012News for travel agents

  Business and Industry Watch 
  • Sixth Royal Caribbean ship will receive DreamWorks treatment
    Royal Caribbean International has announced that it will introduce the DreamWorks Experience to the Mariner of the Seas. The ship will be the sixth Royal Caribbean vessel to receive the DreamWorks entertainment theme, which features breakfast with DreamWorks characters, activities based on the studio's films and screenings of its recent animated films in a 3-D movie theater. TravelPulse (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hawaiian Airlines will add Taipei-to-Honolulu route
    Hawaiian Airlines will begin nonstop service from Taipei to Honolulu in July. The flights will operate three times a week on an A330-200 jet. "Now that Taiwan is part of the U.S. Visa Waiver Program, we are delighted to be adding Taipei as the latest city in Hawaiian's growing Asia network," said Mark Dunkerley, the carrier's president and CEO. Travel Agent Central (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Era of assigned seats begins for easyJet
    EasyJet has changed the way it doles out seats, going from an open plan to assigned seating. The carrier charges extra for fliers who want a specific seat. The move "offering allocated seating on all of our flights is the single, biggest change the airline has undertaken in its history," said Paul Simmons, easyJet U.K. director. Air Transport World (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Trends and Technology 
  • Travelport will upgrade technology through IBM partnership
    Travelport and IBM are extending their agreement under which the latter would provide advanced technology for Travelport's services. "This agreement extends a 35-year business relationship between Travelport and IBM. Using the latest IBM hardware, software and middle-ware allows us to support the more sophisticated functionality required by our customers and the continued growth of Travelport's business," said Travelport President and CEO Gordon Wilson. TravelPulse (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hotel packages offer a warm escape for the winter
    A number of hotel chains are offering special packages for travelers looking to spend the winter in warmer climes. Among the deals: Fairmont Hotels & Resorts offers stays at its properties including in the Caribbean, Hawaii and South Africa; Regent Hotels & Resorts offers a package at its Phuket, Thailand, resort. TravelAge West (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Foreign visitors set new spending record in September
    Spending by foreign visitors has been increasing in the past three years, and spending in September continued this year's pace toward a new record. A report from the Department of Commerce shows that spending by foreign travelers to the U.S. reached $13.9 billion, a 4% increase over the same month last year. Total spending for the year is on track to break a record. Los Angeles Times/Money & Co. blog (tiered subscription model) (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
  Consumer Travel News 
  Regulatory and Legislative 
  Best Practices 
  • Column: Pitfalls to avoid when responding to online complaints
    Travel agents faced with a customer complaint through social media should control their temper and try to steer the conversation offline, Richard Earls writes. "If the complaint is on social media, remember your response is as public as the complaint. You will be judged, as will the complainer. Let logic play traffic cop this time," Earls writes. Travel Research Online (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Small-Business Strategies 
  • A road map to Internet safety for small businesses
    Small businesses have a wide variety of tools at their disposal to protect their networks from intrusion, but experts say that fending off cybercriminals entails more than building a strong wall to keep them out: It also requires someone to man it. All the antivirus and antimalware software in the world is no good if hackers are let in the door. Commentator Nathan Segal offers tips for avoiding Internet scams that lure unsuspecting users to download malicious software, reveal passwords and give up private information, including using hosting security tools and password protection services. (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Can't-miss content-marketing trends
    Even if your content-marketing strategy is working at the moment, a number of changes might be coming that could affect its performance, John Paul Nettles writes. Marketers should track key metrics, cater to mobile viewers and ensure they are distributing high-quality content. (12/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  ASTA Spotlight 
  • Getting more business from
    Did you know that has more than 100 tools to help you boost your business and make a profit? You have access to unlimited FREE consumer leads, multiple networking forums to connect with your fellow members, press releases to send to your local media, webinars about the travel industry and so much more. You can learn about all of the great tools and resources available to you any time you need them. Your ASTA membership is more than just a logo -- it's an education. Watch an introduction to LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • ASTA announces redefined benefits and dues structure for U.S. travel agents
    Effective Jan. 1, 2013, ASTA's Travel Agent membership will transition from an individual membership to a company membership. The change allows U.S. Travel Agency Company members to extend ASTA benefits and resources to all of its employees, rather than just one representative. So whether you have 3 or 300 employees, ASTA's valuable and critical industry resources are available to your entire company. As part of this new program, ASTA travel agency membership dues will be a tiered fee based on agency sales volume. For an overview of the new structure, see or contact ASTA's Membership Department for more information at 1-800-ASK-ASTA or LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Learn more about ASTA ->Resources  |  Conferences  |  Consumer Travel Information  |  Join ASTA

The forceps of our minds are clumsy things and crush the truth a little in the course of taking hold of it."
--H.G. Wells,
British author

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